Summer is here, and that means thoughts of lazy beach days, dips in the pool, and a little less clothing. It can also mean that we are tempted to push our exercise routine into high gear. But as your bariatric surgeons, we have to give you the boring, but important, tips to stay healthy, safe and injury-free during your new workouts. Following are a few tips to make the most of your exercise routine, but also avoid the pitfalls that can set you back.
There is no lack of advice on all the ways that you can lose weight by modifying the way you work. Unfortunately, many of these tips and tricks, such as sitting on an exercise ball instead of an office chair, or standing while working, do not address the most dangerous part of our daily work and home habits – the sedentary lifestyle. While many of these tips can add to a healthy new lifestyle, some can harm us. So, before you subscribe to the latest fad in workplace weight loss, consider a few ideas:
Eating properly day-in and day-out is hard. Even harder is finding the time to cook a delicious, healthful, homemade meal while managing your busy schedule. To help you get through the week and still enjoy what you eat, you may want to consider prepping food for the entire week the weekend before. Of course, this is easier said than done; but once you realize how much time you save during the week, you’ll wonder why you didn’t do this sooner.
Before we get started, it’s important to remember that the key to making this work is solid planning and preparing a variety of foods. Eating the same old thing every day, even if it is something you like, gets old very fast. Prepping a few staples that can either be eaten as a meal, a side dish, or a snack will not only save you time, but may become your new normal once you see how easy and efficient it can be.
Although surgical complication rates have decreased dramatically over the past several decades, the most common patient issue after a surgical procedure is infection. While there are a multitude of causes of infection, improper wound care after the patient returns home from the hospital is a significant one.
Improper wound care can also lead to worsened scarring and a longer recovery period. It is important to remember that discharge from the hospital is simply an acknowledgement that the patient no longer needs constant monitoring – it does not mean that the risks of surgery are over.
Deciding to have weight loss surgery is a major step and one that shouldn’t be taken lightly. If you have struggled with obesity for most of your life, you have experienced the frustration of many diet and exercise failures. Now that you have decided to proceed with surgery, you are hopeful that “this time” is going to be different.
As you prepare for surgery, here are a few things to keep in mind:
You are thinking about weight loss surgery. You’re tired of dieting, losing weight and then hitting a plateau. You’re frustrated that you’ve been going to the gym and working so hard with minimal results. Your weight is going up and down then up even higher. The only predictable part of the whole process is frustration.
At this point, you may have decided that bariatric surgery is an option for you. You found a doctor and had your consultation and you’re informed that you’ll have to embark on a liquid diet before surgery. What? Yes, a liquid diet.
If you have been referred to our practice from your primary care physician, it is likely that you do need surgery. This may be because the condition you are experiencing can only be corrected by surgery, such as hernias or gallbladder disease, which cannot be improved by any other method. The other possibility is that your team of medical professionals has determined that medications and non-surgical treatment has not offered the relief you or they have expected – they feel that surgery may be the best option for you.
Some patients, having done their research or having spoken to friends, may have found out about an effective surgical procedure for their condition. We certainly encourage our patients to do their homework, however we caution against drawing conclusions without proper medical advice. The only way to know if surgery is truly the right option is to schedule a consultation with one of our surgeons or to speak to your primary care physician.
Your first consultation represents a very important start to the weight loss surgery process. You will have been introduced to our practice and some of our staff by attending one of our seminars with Dr. Muhammad Feteiha, Dr. Joao Lopes or Dr. James Lopes. And while attending a bariatric seminar offers a degree of insight into the options, benefits and risks of each bariatric procedure we offer, it is not it does not mean that you necessarily qualify for bariatric surgery. In fact, a number of tests to evaluate your suitability for surgery will be performed in the lead up to the procedure itself. The first step in that process, is to sit down with one of our surgeons for a consultation.
Vitamin deficiencies are a possible side effect of bariatric surgery. The degree to which a patient may experience nutritional deficiencies largely depends on several factors. First, is the person himself or herself – many people have difficulty with the absorption of one vitamin or another. Some have chronic Vitamin B12 deficiencies while others will have trouble retaining Vitamin D. Over the course of time, with proper testing, we will be able to understand the root of these deficiencies and address them.
Second is the procedure performed. The malabsorptive components (where part of the small intestine is bypassed) of a gastric bypass or duodenal switch lend themselves to a greater chance for nutritional deficiencies than purely restrictive procedures such as the gastric band or gastric sleeve.
Finally, your lifestyle will play a key role. Remember, after surgery, you will likely not be able to get all of your vitamins and minerals from food alone – even those that are nutrient dense.
Reflux is most often treated with over-the-counter antacids or prescription acid-blocking medications. However these medicines do not address the root cause of the problem, which is the reflux itself. Rather, they simply mask the symptoms of reflux by neutralizing acid.
It is not the acidity of the stomach contents itself that cause reflux. Rather, it is the upward motion of the stomach contents into the esophagus. Therefore, addressing the acid itself is of minimal long-term use. Ultimately, it is best to prevent the movement of acid in the first place.